MERC Oman's Hamed Al-Wahaibi set for dramatic return to rallying


For immediate release
Thursday, November 24th, 2011


· Omani star will team up with co-driver Allan Harryman
· Al-Wahaibi lays faith in powerful Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X
· Wahaibi Motor Sports (WMS) launched in Muscat
· Al-Wahaibi delighted with first test session in Oman

MUSCAT (Oman): Hamed Al-Wahaibi, one of the fastest Arab rally drivers of all time, is set to make a sensational return to top flight international rallying in two weeks, when he tackles the Dubai International Rally, the final round of the FIA Middle East Rally Championship.

To prepare for his return to active competition, the Muscat-based star carried out a test session with his new Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X on Wednesday afternoon and will tackle the first of two Oman national rallies this weekend.

Wahaibi has teamed up with Ulster-based co-driver Allan Harryman for his programme of events at the end of the 2011 season that includes the pair of national-status events in the Sultanate of Oman, either side of his challenge for honours in the Dubai International Rally. Harryman’s father Terry was a regular partner for the Omani during his days at the forefront of regional rallying.

“Obviously I have been out of action for some time and want to feel my way back in,” said Al-Wahaibi, speaking after Wednesday’s test session in Oman. “I am very happy with the car. All is well and we are progressing nicely.”

Hamed has also set up Wahaibi Motor Sports (WMS), not just to enable him to compete in international rallying, but also to find potential stars of the future in Oman. “It will be my way of giving something back to the sport,” added the Omani. “It will be a vehicle for me to source new rallying talent within the Middle East though a Youth Development Programme.”

Hamed Al-Wahaibi sprung to prominence in Middle East events in the 1990s and went on to be one of the leading drivers in the FIA World Rally Championship. He finished second in the Group N WRC series in 1999 and climbed as high as ninth in the world rankings.

More recently, he was granted the honour of working as a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF and his career example is included in the Oman Ministry of Education’s curriculum for grade 10 students.

Al-Wahaibi and Harryman will tackle this weekend’s Oman national rally in the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X, before heading to the UAE for the final round of the FIA Middle East Rally Championship at the start of December.


For further information:
Neil Perkins, NDP Publicity Services, Mobile: + 44 7831 123153, E-mail: ndppublicity@googlemail.com,
www.ndp-publicity.com (press releases).


Date issued: 24/11/2011

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